Fleshers recall Black Eck and Billy Stark

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Selkirk’s centuries-old Incorporation of Fleshers kept memories alive at their Bussin ceremony on Saturday, with a healthy turnout of 250 diners in the Victoria Halls.

The Craft’s Deacon Keith Laurie, who chaired the function, introduced the night’s speakers with, first up, the 2007 Royal Burgh Standard Bearer, Alasdair Craig, toasting the Royal and Ancient Burgh. Provost David Anderson replied, before Fleshers Standard Bearer Ivor Ward’s banner was bussed by his wife Sara, in his colours of dark pink with silver writing.

Following Sara’s recital of her own poem about her husband, Ivor’s brother Andrew Ward then proposed the toast to the Standard Bearer, with another humorous speech.

The Royal Burgh Standard Bearer Greg MacDougall then wished him good luck and Hail Smiling Morn on Friday, before last year’s 2013 Fleshers Standard Bearer Scott MacKenzie then gave a vote of thanks.

The night’s entertainment was provided by singers Tommy Knox, Jimmy Gibb and Fiona Gallagher, with Selkirk Silver Band. The evening had emotional moments too, when 2010 Fleshers Standard Bearer, Robert Black, recited a poem ‘It’s The Flags’ by one of Selkirk’s best-loved storytellers and posties, Billy Stark, who died last year aged 83. The late Eck Bunyan, known as ‘Black Eck’, who would have been celebrating his 25th anniversary as Fleshers Standard Bearer this year, was also remembered in the speeches.

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